The House -9-

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I took on the walkway between the garage and the fence in the courtyard. When I turned to the stairs, our young neighbors’ little dog stuck out his nose through the doggy door, barking.

That gave me a startle and I continued walking holding my purse towards the dog.

“Good boy, Pax,” I heard and the young woman came out to see me.

“I’m sorry,” she said with a big smile, “Pax is a good puppy, but still needs some training. I’m Jacky, by the way” and stretched her hand to meet mine.

“Don’t worry, Jacky. I hope I will be Pax’s friend. I’m Sophie, Adam’s mother.”

Her face brightened even more and nodded her head. “Adam mentioned something about you coming for a visit.”

“For a visit …” These words inside my head sounded funny. I wasn’t there for a visit, I was there to stay after the commotion with my husband, soon to be my ex.

The woman picked up Pax in her arms. “It’s so good for a boy to have his mother around, isn’t it, Pax?”

“Yes, it’s a two way road.” I sounded so tired.

“I let you go then. Very nice to meet you, Sophie.” She turned to get back in the house.

“I’m sorry, may I ask you something?” I continued.

“Sure.”

I lowered my voice. “Do you know who lives next door?”

Jacky raised her eyebrows. “Next door?”

“Yes, ” and I made a motion with my chin to the house by the stairs. “There.”

The woman waved her hand. “Oh, nobody. The house is empty.”

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